The South Mountain Freeway’s first new interchange at 40th Street has opened on schedule, an important step forward for the state’s largest-ever freeway construction project.
The interchange is ready for traffic less than four months after 40th Street closed south of Cottonwood Lane to allow construction of the new interchange.
At 92 feet wide, the interchange has nearly double the capacity of the previous intersection of 40th Street and Pecos Road. It will have two southbound lanes that will continue south of the freeway, two left-turn lanes to eastbound Loop 202 South Mountain Freeway, and a right-turn lane to westbound Loop 202. There also are two northbound lanes, with a left-turn lane to westbound Loop 202, and a dedicated northbound left-turn lane into the Park & Ride parking lot.
The fully functioning interchange includes ramps that will allow drivers to enter and exit the future freeway lanes in both directions. While construction continues, speed limits will remain at 40 mph on both future freeway lanes and the remaining sections of Pecos Road.
There also is a new traffic signal at Cottonwood Lane and 40th Street, which will benefit drivers turning into and out of the Park & Ride lot, as well as neighborhood traffic.
The new design also will give bus riders a new option for entering the 40th Street Park and Ride location. In addition to entering from 40th Street, drivers can enter and exit from the westbound on-ramp to Loop 202. The entrance to the Park and Ride is about 100 yards west of 40th Street.
In addition, the Wild Horse Pass Hotel and Casino and the Phoenix Premium Outlets will be accessible either from I-10 and Wild Horse Pass Boulevard, or by taking 40th Street south to Willis Road.
The 22-mile freeway is scheduled for full completion in 2020, although traffic is expected to begin using the freeway earlier.
The South Mountain Freeway will provide a long-planned direct link between the East Valley and West Valley and a much-needed alternative to I-10 through downtown Phoenix. For information on the project, visit SouthMountainFreeway.com.